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(iv) To enable the workers to make family interventions through 'special psychosocial skills' and not just advising. The overall aim to train the team in using psychosocial skills in the high risk families was to identify and build on strengths and resources in the mother and her social environment which will help her to cope better with her problems. It was thought that these strengths and resources shall be of use in working on the problems in a systematic manner using positive reinforcement.

During several meetings held between the investigators and the research team an effort was made to understand the family in its totality. Each and every point of family functioning, its problems -psychological, medical, social and financial, and also its strengths and resources were discussed. Intervention was discussed in detail. The team was told that the problems for which interventions as usually required may be of different nature. Some problems may be personal and others may be related to social and home environment. Tackling these problems would require a lot of skills and the use of common sense. What is required of the team is that the workers should see the family, identify the risk factors and intervene in such a way that they do not annoy or irritate the family members or disrupt the family's functioning. It is quite possible that many aspects of a special family situation may be amenable to change. However, it may still be possible to improve the well being of the mother and to promote healthy development of child without being able to substantially change some risk factors in a family. This must not be seen as a failure. During the training a genuine desire to help the families was developed in the workers. The team was told that the most important thing during the family interventions would be to show empathy and understanding. Another important thing would be to find out the reasons for the presence of certain risk factors. For example, in a family where 'child neglect' has been rated positive, an attempt to find out whether this negligence is due to lack of awareness about children's needs, or lack of sufficient resources to take care of the children or is it because of the sex of the child (female child is usually more neglected in a family than a male child). Similarly 'abject poverty' in a family may be present because of insufficient/irregular income, physical illness in the family member (money being spent on treatment etc.) alcoholism in husband and/or improper utilization of the family income. The idea was to explore all these possibilities in the problem families.

The training of the research team also included intensive field practice. The cases selected to train the research workers and to test the feasibility for


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